Pat Barblett, AM founder of the Rottnest Foundation and Deputy Chair was inducted into the WA Women’s Hall of Fame on International Women’s Day on 8 March at Government House.

Pat was acknowledged as a leader in the field of conservation and park management of WA’s unique environment.

Pat was the first woman appointed to the Rottnest Island Authority Board, serving on the Board for 16 years, and chairing it for 3 years before retiring in 1993.  Her achievements during her time were many including; the first Environmental Intepretation Plan for the Island, establishment of the Rottnest Museum, converting the Kingstown Army Barracks into the Rottnest Environmental Education Centre and Youth Hostel, establishing the Rottnest Voluntary Guides and Chairing the Rottnest Island Hospital Board.  Pat founded the Rottnest Foundation in 1985 and is the current Deputy Chair.

Pat Barblett (right) with Hon Simone McGurk, MLA Minister for Women’s Interests

Her conservation involvement did not stop there, she is also the immediate past Chair of the Conservation Commission, where she has been a member for nearly 17 years.

Pat was awarded the Sir David Brand Medal in the WA Tourism Awards in 2003, was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 2004 for her service to environmental conservation and management, and to the development of ecotourism opportunities in Western Australia and received the Prime Minister’s Medal in 2004.

Pat also founded the Forum Advocating Cultural and Eco Tourism Inc (FACET) in 1991 in response to the rapid growth in nature-based tourism and the need to guide its sustainable development.  Having recently stepped down from the Chair of FACET, Pat has been the guiding force behind the organisation’s success and longevity.